Photo by Gift Habeshaw on Unsplash

The value of a ring isn't always how much it costs.

Engagement tradition in the United States largely around the ring as an outward symbol of commitment, traditionally displayed as a singular diamond. Though the diamond engagement ring technically dates back to the 1400s in Rome, a De Beers ad campaign in 1947 that declared, "Diamonds are forever," equated diamonds with marriage in our collective psyches for the better part of the last century.

For some grooms, the size of the "rock" is also a status symbol, showing either how much you can afford or how much of a sacrifice you're willing to make for your bride.

But as one man found out when he tried to upgrade his wife's engagement ring, the size of the diamond isn't what some women value at all.

A Reddit user shared a photo of a woman's hand with a small, simple diamond ring on her left ring finger.

"7 yrs ago, she said 'yes' to me with this $500 fruity pebble of a diamond when I was BROKE-broke," the post reads.
I make $200k now. I surprised her yesterday with an upgrade for Valentine's Day, but she said RETURN IT, that 'anything else would be a downgrade' because of what this little dot means to her 🥲."

"So I am returning this $8k upgrade and I'm taking her to Korea and Japan this winter instead for the same price ❤," the person added.

Now, there's nothing wrong with someone wanting a different ring once they have the money to afford one, but the fact that her original $500 engagement ring was more valuable to her than an $8,000 diamond is tugging at people's heartstrings.

"Brother you’ve found a hell of diamond, I ain’t talking about them rocks," shared one commenter.

"I'm with her there, the first one is lovely and means something. The second ones are... a bit much for a lot of people, but then I hate diamonds, so maybe I'm biased. Memories are worth far more than a common rock IMO. Enjoy your trip!" added another.

"I’ve got almost the same story," added another. "Hubby and I were broke when he asked me to marry him. We picked out my ring together. The set included a wedding bank and cost $275. We’ve been married 38 years. Several times, he’s asked me if I want a different ring. I always say no. This ring is perfect!"

One woman's drove home the true value of a "cheap" ring with a story about her late husband:

"My husband and I got 'temp' rings that were $80 and eloped with the idea that on our 5 year anniversary we would renew our vows, get 'real' rings and have a 'real' wedding.

Unfortunately he passed away in 2017. I cherish my silly little temp ring. It’s the one he placed on my finger and I will love it forever. Even when the tech at the nail salon snickers about it. Even though the stone has cracked and I don’t know how to fix it. This is MY ring that HE gave me I will love it with my whole heart just as I did him.

It’s not the ring, it’s the person who gave it, that makes it worth cherishing.

She cherishes you."

It's a good reminder that the real value of an item is not how much it costs but how much it means and that engagement rings don't have to be fancy or expensive to fulfill their purpose.